Jefferson County has one of the largest homeless populations in the Denver metro area. The 2016 Point-In-Time count of homeless people in Jefferson County found 439 people homeless. On Sunday, we were devastated to hear, that one member of that population, was found deceased, frozen to death outside of the Arvada Branch of the Jefferson county library system.
Jefferson County has a severe weather network, in conjunction with Denver, but in our volunteering experiences, we have found that it is very difficult to get our homeless needy to go far from the area where they are centrally located, know other homeless, and feel safe. https://swshelternetwork.com/homeless/
The Action Center has been a part of this vital community effort for several years, and their severe weather Hotline number is 720-257-9414. Due to their efforts with this underserved population over the past years, their name is one that is trusted, and is more likely to be accepted by many of the homeless population needing assistance. The Network goes into effect when the forecast is below 32 degrees and wet, or below 20 degrees and dry.
Just recently The Lakewood Elks lodge 1777 opened a new warming shelter at 1455 Newland Street in Lakewood. It opens at 6:00PM on any night that the temperature is under 20 degrees, and they will also shuttle from there to in front of the Action Center where people can catch the bus to the overnight shelter.
For the Arvada area, The Rising Church is at 7500 W 57th Ave. also open their doors for warming at 6:00 pm and 20 degrees. They have a large mission for the homeless, and are always accepting sleeping bags, coats, volunteers and donations. https://arvadarising.com/homeless-ministry/
All of these organizations require volunteers to keep their doors open, and those opportunities, include but are not limited to supervising at a shelter once a month, manning hotline phones, providing meals at the various shelters, and taking the further steps so that these individuals can find more permanent solutions.
Jefferson County Heading Home is a collaboration of individuals, public service, and faith-based organizations from the community that work together to provide contacts, information and food and shelter, especially during these times of cold weather, when our homeless are particularly vulnerable. Below are contact links for the various organizations involved, as well as information about how to volunteer or get involved.
- Family Tree
- Action Center
- Arvada Housing Authority
- Arvada Police
- Family Cold Weather Shelter
- Severe Weather Shelter Network
- City of Westminster
- Wheat Ridge Police
- Jefferson County Human Services
- Jefferson County Public Library
- Jeffco Public Schools
- City of Lakewood
- Lakewood Police
- Mean Street Ministry